Riley, Spoelstra take pay cuts

MIAMI -- Miami Heat basketball operations employees have accepted up to a 20 percent pay cut in order to avoid layoffs.

The cuts affect everyone in the department, including team president Pat Riley, head coach Erik Spoelstra, assistant coaches, scouts and others. The South Florida Sun-Sentinel first reported the salary reduction in its Tuesday editions.

Player salaries are not being affected.

The Heat laid off 20 members of their business operations staff in May as a result of the economic downturn. In 2003, the franchise asked employees to accept 10 percent pay cuts because of falling revenues.

Lower ticket prices and scaled-back sponsorship deals have decreased revenue around the NBA, which is projecting further reductions over the coming year.

While the Heat are about $3 million above the NBA's luxury tax threshold, the team has only 13 players under contract, two below the regular-season maximum, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reported.

The Heat are about $12 million above the league's soft salary cap and took on an additional $700,000 in salary in a trade for Quentin Richardson, according to the report. But the team has not replaced former general manager Randy Pfund, who resigned shortly before the start of last season.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.